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Belfast Live
Belfast Live
Niall Deeney

Community rescue service seeks volunteers for Derry expansion

The charity Community Rescue Service is seeking volunteers as it prepares to expand in Derry.

The search and rescue service, which operates across Northern Ireland, is already up-and-running in the city but is aiming to establish a full-time unit in the Derry city area.

Ryan Hughes, a voluntary search and rescue technician, caught up with Belfast Live to explain the work they carry out in the city, their collaboration with Foyle Search and Rescue, and how those interested can apply to take part.

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"We're available 24/7, 365 days of the year and we all do this outside of our fulltime jobs and family lives," he explained.

"I spotted CRS on a TV show on the BBC, it was called The Search, and it just caught my eye straight away. I had never heard of them before that. That was about three or four years ago and I'm still here, involved with them today.

"Not just in Derry, but across Northern Ireland we are a charitable organisation tasked with looking for high-risk missing people. We look in rivers, land and water searches. We cover all of that."

On their plans for expansion in Derry, Mr Hughes said: "At the moment we are hoping to establish a full-time unit in the Derry city area - a land team only.

"We are looking for as many people to apply as possible. If you are fit and able, and you're looking to help your local community, if you're looking to help people who are in need and have families searching for their missing loved ones, we would love for you to apply."

He continued: "There are no restrictions on who can apply. We take anyone and everyone. We offer a lowland rescue accredited training programme. It is a nearly three-month training programme that covers everything you need to know."

On the collaboration with Foyle Search and Rescue, he said: "We are one of the many search and rescue organisations within Northern Ireland. In Derry we work alongside Foyle Search and Rescue and we work quite well together. We all have the same objective - to try and help missing people come back home.

"They primarily look after the water, while we're on land."

Applicants are encouraged to email or through


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